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Module 3: Floor Checks

Experiential Embodied Psychoeducational Processes for Groups

On Demand
0 CE Hours

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 Clinicians who work with groups can find it challenging to get them to open up, examine themselves, and engage with each other. Floor checks address this need. They are user-friendly for both therapist and client and take the guesswork out of incorporating experiential work into programming and practice. Floor Checks get clients out of their chairs, on their feet, grounded in the room, and connected with each other. Floor Checks activate the social engagement system in service of healing. They give participants practice in tuning in on themselves and connecting in new, more satisfying ways.


Floor checks are psychoeducational. They incorporate the research that needs to be taught in recovering from cPTSD into a lively format that gets people connecting and sharing in meaningful and spontaneous ways. Floor Checks empower clients to become stakeholders in their recovery; they build the skills of emotional literacy, intelligence, and resilience.


Floor Checks teach about trauma, grief, and resilience as they simultaneously provide an interpersonal and community healing process. They can be easily adapted to be gender and culture-sensitive. They give therapists a clearly outlined process that builds momentum for change, teaches the skills of emotional regulation and literacy, and makes work more focused and contained.


A progression of floor checks in RTR-S can begin with The Feeling Floor Check. Then, a Symptom Floor Check brings forward the many ways cPTSD may manifest. From there, a wide variety of floor checks continue to break down and explore those symptoms, such as The Fear/Anxiety Floor Check, The Anger Floor Check, The Depression Floor Check, and so forth. Consolidating floor checks can be The Resilience Floor Check and The Post Traumatic Growth Floor Check. There are many possible floor checks in Sociometrics, The Living Stage, and Treating Adult Children of Relational Trauma that are specifically targeted to the treatment of adult relational trauma and addiction. There are also targeted floor checks for grief, resilience, and post-traumatic growth. (See for downloadable floor checks) Floor Checks also help clients “warm up” to simple, targeted role plays that emerge naturally through the combined experiential process. 


NOTE: Level One certificate holders are expected to stay within their practice range, which does not include trauma work, e.g., The Symptom Floor Check.

Educational Goal

The educational goal of this module is for participants to increase their understanding of how to use floor checks as a tool to engage groups and help clients to develop skills used for emotional literacy, regulation and healing.

Learning Objectives

At the end of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Describe a user-friendly way to incorporate therapeutic experiential group processes into treatment programs.

  • Describe 2 or more processes that engage and bond groups and get them out of their chairs, on their feet and interacting with each other.

  • Suggest which experiential process educates groups on the symptoms of cPTSD that can be made relevant to each group member’s life.

  • Teach the experiential processes of Floor Checks that can be used in group or individual therapy.

  • Describe how floor checks decrease the emotional resistance to participation that can accompany trauma.

  • Explain how floor checks connect group members to themselves and each other.

  • Describe how to incorporate simple, focused role plays into sociometric processes.

  • Demonstrate how to use Floor Checks in a group setting.

Tian Dayton MA, PhD, TEP

Tian Dayton, Ph.D., is a Senior Fellow at The Meadows and a nationally renowned speaker, expert, and consultant in trauma, addiction, and psychodrama. Dr. Dayton is the director of The New York Psychodrama Training Institute and author of 15 books, including the soon-to-be-released Treating Adult Children of Relational Trauma, Sociometrics, Emotional Sobriety, The ACoA Trauma Syndrome, and others. A board-certified trainer in psychodrama, sociometry, and group psychotherapy, she’s spent her decades-long career adapting psychodrama and sociometry for work specifically with relational trauma and addictions. Her trademarked processes, Relational Trauma Repair/RTR-SOCIOMETRICS, are used nationally and worldwide. Dr. Dayton is a fellow of the American Society of Psychodrama, Sociometry and Group Psychotherapy ASGPP, winner of the Lifetime Achievement Award, their Scholar’s Award, the President’s Award, and former editor-in-chief of the Journal of Psychodrama, Sociometry and Group Psychotherapy. She also won The Marty Mann Award, The Mona Mansell Award, and The Ackermann Black Award. Dr. Dayton earned her masters in educational psychology and Ph.D. in clinical psychology. She served on the faculty at NYU for eight years and has appeared as a guest expert on NBC, CNN, MSNBC, and other major media outlets.

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